EMILY'S OWN ELEPHANT
From a well-loved British author (Tom's Midnight Garden), a not-quite-believable story: Emily's father talks about cutting down the big trees around their country home, or tearing down the old shed, but Emily and her mother tell him that he just doesn't have enough to do; besides, they may come in handy. Sure enough, when Emily visits the zoo there is a baby elephant, Jumbo, that the keeper is trying to give away; it is a miniature and the zoo wants only "elephantine" elephants. So when Emily's family gets Jumbo, they not only have everything he needs, but he'll give Dad something to do with his spare time. Beautifully told--though Pearce doesn't suggest much beyond the fantasy made real here. The vigorous, precise drawings, washed with soft hues, evoke an almost idyllic landscape while echoing the story's warmth and humor. Offbeat and engaging.